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Posted at 1:30 PM ET, 12/ 6/2010

Obama warns of new 'Sputnik moment' for United States

By Perry Bacon Jr.

WINSTON-SALEM, N.C.--President Obama warned of another "Sputnik moment" in the United States in a speech here, saying the country must invest in innovation and technology as it did in the 1950's and 60's to match the Soviet Union, which launched Sputnik, the first satellite to orbit the earth
 
"We need a commitment to innovation we haven't seen since President Kennedy challenged us to go to the moon," Obama said at Forsyth Technical Community College.
 
He urged members of both parties to "focus on what is necessary to win the future."
 
Obama did not detail any new policy ideas to implement this goal, but emphasized he would spend the next several months looking for new ideas to increase innovation. And he said policies his administration has already implemented, such an education program called "Race to the Top" that rewards states for creative methods of improving student achievement, are already setting the groundwork for American advances in science and technology.

The president touted two biotech classrooms before speaking at Forsyth, which has the largest biotechnology training program in North Carolina.
 
Beyond his focus on innovation, Obama again urged Congress to extend tax cuts due to expire at year's end and extend benefits to people who are unemployed.

According to the Associated Press, Obama said lawmakers are still engaged in "serious debate" as they work through differences. He reiterated his opposition to a permanent extension of tax cuts for top income earners, saying the country couldn't afford them.

The negotiations between the administration and lawmakers of both parties have centered on a two-year extension of current rates, the AP said.

With the nation's unemployment rate hovering near 10 percent, Obama also said it was equally important for lawmakers to pass an extension of the jobless benefits.

Republicans have insisted that any extension of jobless aid be paid for with cuts elsewhere in the federal budget. The White House opposes that, saying such cuts are economically damaging during a weak recovery.

A month after his party suffered sweeping defeats in the midterm elections, Obama said it's time for lawmakers to stop making decisions based on the political implications for the next election, according to the AP report.

"I believe that right now there are bigger issues at stake for our country than politics," he said.

 

 
 

By Perry Bacon Jr.  | December 6, 2010; 1:30 PM ET
Categories:  44 The Obama Presidency  
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Comments

I agree that this is a REAL danger. However, if the left recognizes this, why do they persist in:
1) supporting and protecting teacher's unions which are destroying our educational system (especially in math);
2) dropping essential space programs and establishing the purpolse of NASA = to build muslums self esteem - irrespectve of their TOTAL lack of accomplishments) in industrialization much less space exploratioln. Hypocrisy deluxe.

Posted by: IQ168 | December 8, 2010 7:21 AM | Report abuse

Sad how short term memory are some, Obama is trying to fix the disaster that was "W" years, now nobody remember or try to forget his big mistakes, the overspending during war times with huge deficits and federal contracts going to his big oil and halliburton (Cheney) friends among others, a war effort which btw was impose upon the country with lies or half truths, while doing this, turning the Clinton's big budget surplus into the big deficit that we got now, the tax cuts that didn't create any new jobs but only serve to make the rich richer and had put a big strain on the federal budget with one source of income less and leaving the country and the coming generations heavily indebted with China, the number one US debt holder which btw will take years if not decades to repay and could become a threat to national security, broad deregulation which lead the country to the worst economic downturn since the great depression, Obama didn't create the crisis, he inherit it, still the republicans had manage to keep putting rocks on every path that Obama try to fix this big mess, and put the blame for crisis on him, just to get back to the old bush("mess")years, which they help create in first place, making the big cats even fatter.

Posted by: humb1962 | December 7, 2010 4:15 PM | Report abuse

Obama has done nothing, but obstruct the U.S. Space Program. This organization has gathered the best and brightest since the Kennedy era. Yet, it has been a political football during the whole time. Politicians eager to get their pictures taken at KSC with astronauts and then rush back to Washington to cut the space budget and then demand more miracles from the personel there who faced the constant threat of layoffs. We still have these two faced phonies, Obama included, who have no respect for the fact that, unknown to most of the U.S. public, most of the people who work there, went there dedicated to the mission, not for personal financial gain. I know from personal experience gained from the nine years I worked there.
Today, there is no evidence that anything has changed. If the economy hicups, hit the Space Program never mind the idiot entitlement programs supporting people who never worked a real job in their lives and have no desire to do so.

Posted by: TexRancher | December 7, 2010 7:54 AM | Report abuse


President just spoke. He doesn't like some of the compromise but admits that political fighting isn't good at this time. He said more too.

Now the House Democrats are baulking at it.

It should go to vote by Wednesday....but with the House Democrats baulking....
everyone go to HOUSE.GOV and write these Congressman on how
(for the unemployed).....
you won't be able to pay rent, house pmts, car pmts.....and even put food on the table for your family. Give them the hard luck story. To every Dem Congressman in the HOUSE. It's easy to do, just cut and paste the sentences into their email accounts.
Flood them !!! We need the unemployment extension.

Posted by: TheBabeNemo | December 6, 2010 7:14 PM | Report abuse

It's 2010. We should be farther along into the 21st Century than we are, but Bush/Cheney were more interested in supporting old technology and oil interests. Now the Republicans want to pare down research and development in order to give their CEO supporters personal tax breaks. President Obama has the vision and intellect to help us compete. But I'm not sure the electorate has the intelligence to see how far we are lagging in the rest of the world.

Posted by: MNUSA | December 6, 2010 6:27 PM | Report abuse

President Obama you don't have what is takes to mount a Kennedy-esque challenge for anything. As the man said, You're no Jack Kennedy. Never were.

Posted by: farhorizons | December 6, 2010 6:14 PM | Report abuse

Sorry President Obama, but you don't have what it takes to mount a Kennedy-esque challenge for anything. As the man said to another vacuous wimp, You're no Jack Kennedy. Never were.

Posted by: farhorizons | December 6, 2010 6:11 PM | Report abuse

"Republicans have insisted that any extension of jobless aid be paid for with cuts elsewhere in the federal budget. The White House opposes that, saying such cuts are economically damaging during a weak recovery."

No, what's damaging is spending money we don't have, worsening our already near-ruinous debt.

Posted by: HenryMiller1 | December 6, 2010 5:59 PM | Report abuse

If someone had some actual political courage, s/he would change the debate to how America should run a moon-shot economic program to generate US jobs for what's next -- Like nanotech, biotech, clean energy....­... s/he would be talking about putting Americans first in all policy; notice 'Americans­' not 'interests­' or 'security' or vague hopes or fears; Americans. That's us. We own the place. We don't need a bailout, we need politician­s to stop bailing out on us for money.

Just in case some aide who matters does read this, here are the terms for that, so you don't just get confused:

Most EU nations, China, India, Singapore and even Brazil openly fund next generation businesses. And, they do not allow other nations to just take whatever they like.

I think it time for the US to fund an economic moon shot -and- halt the current draining of our well-being.

The shot mechanics:
1. Select key industries: nanotech, biotech, genetics, two good energy plays
2. Build the tech centers for invention and manufacturing
3. Provide near-free rent in those facilities
4. In cash, pay for 90% of the salaries of the staff
5. Consider a Los Alamos, NASA, DARPA or Sandia structure

Rules:
1. No patents; everything is a trade secret
2. No offshore licensing; all products made in the USA

Posted by: MidBlue | December 6, 2010 5:51 PM | Report abuse

MAKE THE DEAL !!!

VOTE BY FRIDAY !!!

Posted by: TheBabeNemo | December 6, 2010 5:36 PM | Report abuse

Mr Obama is right. There are things "just around the corner" which could launch the world into the Singularity.

It's at the point where even corporate entities could break open the Next Big Thing. That could be almost anything, and probably something we just have no real reason to expect. We need people capable of looking for, and harnessing, the unexpected, long before anyone could reasonably expect it.

Or, for all we know, we could be invaded by Nunavut Technical College in an overwhelming and irresistable horde of Eskimos With Phasers.

Posted by: thardman | December 6, 2010 5:35 PM | Report abuse

Here I thought our living saint was just trying to spend us to oblivion and ruin us financially and then I find out he is just dumber than dirt.

Posted by: GordonShumway | December 6, 2010 5:27 PM | Report abuse

Pres. Obama continues to have problems with facts coupled with his insatiable desire to "steal from one to spend on one his favorites". And he wanted to cut NASA's budget by $5B to fund one of his "education" follies? Now he finds NASA to be worthwhile for technology development and deployment? He has got to be a "one and done". The man is a disaster and has no clue. Reminds me of a pinball machine, bouncing all over the place with no concept of where he is headed. And I thought J.Carter was the president who had (and still has)no clue. B.Obama has grabbed the ring from J.Carter. And we still have to suffer through 2 more years of this incompetence...

Posted by: justthefacts14 | December 6, 2010 5:21 PM | Report abuse

obama is dumber than a bag of hammers

please resign obama

Posted by: COOLCHILLY | December 6, 2010 5:04 PM | Report abuse

OBAMA AND HIS TWO BLOWFISH...AXELROD AND GIBBS ARE NERDS WHOM NEVER KNEW ABOUT FIGHTING...BUT RUNNING


YEP....THIS MAN IS IN AWE OF REAGAN, LINCOLN AND THE BUSH POLICIES

OUT HE GOES IN 2012....I'LL RISK THE CHANCE OF HAVING A GOP PRESIDENT (GOT ONE NOW ANYWAY) BY NOT VOTING FOR A PRESIDENT IN 2012

Posted by: danders5000 | December 6, 2010 4:54 PM | Report abuse

I GUESS THOSE BOYS AT THE COMMERCE SCARED HIM EVEN MORE WHEN HE WENT TO MEET WITH THEM....

NEVER HEARD OF A PRESIDENT GOING TO MEET THE COMMERCE...NORMALLY THEY ARE SUMMON TO THE WHITEHOUSE

OBAMA AND HIS TWO BLOWFISH...AXELROD AND GIBBS ARE NERDS WHOM NEVER KNEW ABOUT FIGHTING...BUT RUNNING


YEP....THIS MAN IS IN AWE OF REAGAN, LINCOLN AND THE BUSH POLICIES

OUT HE GOES IN 2012....I'LL RISK THE CHANCE OF HAVING A GOP PRESIDENT (GOT ONE NOW ANYWAY) BY NOT VOTING FOR A PRESIDENT IN 2012

Posted by: danders5000 | December 6, 2010 4:53 PM | Report abuse

I GUESS THOSE BOYS AT THE COMMERCE SCARED HIM EVEN MORE WHEN HE WENT TO MEET WITH THEM....

NEVER HEARD OF A PRESIDENT GOING TO MEET THE COMMERCE...NORMALLY THEY ARE SUMMON TO THE WHITEHOUSE

OBAMA AND HIS TWO BLOWFISH...AXELROD AND GIBBS ARE NERDS WHOM NEVER KNEW ABOUT FIGHTING...BUT RUNNING


YEP....THIS MAN IS IN AWE OF REAGAN, LINCOLN AND THE BUSH POLICIES

OUT HE GOES IN 2012....I'LL RISK THE CHANCE OF HAVING A GOP PRESIDENT (GOT ONE NOW ANYWAY) BY NOT VOTING FOR A PRESIDENT IN 2012

Posted by: danders5000 | December 6, 2010 4:52 PM | Report abuse

Genius is in short supply and is desperately needed by the US in this age of scientific and information technology. A billion intellectually or psychologically challenged minds cannot design one pencil or nail clipper. Instead of wasting money trying to jump start an economy bogged down in brawn, the US should use it by importing hundreds of thousands of the quickest thinking and smartest scientists. The offer of government supplemented jobs paying 200 thousand dollars a year will flood the US with the genius it needs. One of the first tasks of the imported geniuses would be to solve the problem of how to speed up the thinking processes of the millions who are less than smart. No mind should be left behind in the quest for an economy propelled by quick thinkers.

Posted by: morristhewise | December 6, 2010 4:46 PM | Report abuse

I;M SPEAKING ON THE TAX-CUTS...

DEMOCRATS

YOU ALREADY SEEN WHAT OBAMA DID TO THE PARTY....

HE CANNOT FIRED UP THE "CORE" OF THE BASE EVER AGAIN

BUT....ARE YOU WILLING TO GIVE UP YOUR CAREER FOR HIS INEXPERIENCE TO GOVERN RIGHT??????

I WOULDN'T

Posted by: danders5000 | December 6, 2010 4:45 PM | Report abuse

Does anyone even bother's to listen to this spimeless man?

HE HAS NO AGENDA TO RUN ON IN 2012...NONE

AND IF ANY OTHER POLITICIAN LET THIS MAN GET THE VOTE FOR THIS

ALL DEMOCRATS WILL SUFFER IN SOME SORT OF WAY IN 2012

IS THIS ONE MAN WORTH THE DESTRUCTION OF THE WHOLE PARTY?????

Posted by: danders5000 | December 6, 2010 4:41 PM | Report abuse

Whether you like Obama or not, he's right on target. If we don't start taking the lead on the technologies and industries of tomorrow, which center around renewable and clean energy, then we're gonna be out of the game. GE's recovery is because they are selling efficient cars - mainly overseas. Same with Ford. The auto industry is figuring it out and hiring people. We need to do that with wind, solar panels, efficient electronics and appliances, and a host of other tech like carbon storage and adaptation to rising sea levels.

What's the Republican plan? Tax cuts for the rich. That's not a plan.

Posted by: DJMonet | December 6, 2010 4:37 PM | Report abuse

Perhaps this President would be willing to volunteer for our first manned mission to Mars. Could he leave as early as tomorrow morning? Please?

Posted by: dickgd | December 6, 2010 3:37 PM | Report abuse

Perhaps this President would be willing to volunteer for our first manned mission to Mars. Could he leave as early as tomorrow morning? Please?

Posted by: dickgd | December 6, 2010 3:36 PM | Report abuse

Perhaps this President would be willing to volunteer for our first manned mission to Mars. Could he leave as early as tomorrow morning? Please?

Posted by: dickgd | December 6, 2010 3:35 PM | Report abuse

From Obama this is just more fluster, bluster and Meadow Muffions. He had not had a plan on anything from day one. They did propose going on a one way Mission to Mars and chasing an Astroid. They are in the process of trying to shut down the Shuttle program and not develope another heavy lifter to put men and satalite into space. Yep he really inspiring the American people with his massive debt that is unsubstaniable and will brek the nation. This person is a clown with out a brain and that is the best the News Media could find to support thier Liberalism ideals.

Posted by: jmsmaxwell | December 6, 2010 3:24 PM | Report abuse

Who cares what this haircut that paases for a president says?

Posted by: crrobin | December 6, 2010 2:55 PM | Report abuse

Geeze! Come on. . . Clearly a Political diversion to deflect some of our fury about his continued caving in to the GOP - especially on the amoral tax breaks for the rich and offshore Corporations (that pay no U.S. taxes)' and DADT and perhaps even START?

What an immense disappointment to this voter who supported his election 125%! Yep a Vet and "straight" (not that it should matter-or be anyone's business). Incidentally, I've known several gay citizens who are far more ethical and moral than McConnell, Boehner, et al!

Posted by: lufrank1 | December 6, 2010 2:49 PM | Report abuse

Geeze! Come on. . . Clearly a Political diversion to deflect some of our fury about his continued caving in to the GOP - especially on the amoral tax breaks for the rich and offshore Corporations (that pay no U.S. taxes)' and DADT and perhaps even START?

What an immense disappointment to this voter who supported his election 125%! Yep a Vet and "straight" (not that it should matter-or be anyone's business). Incidentally, I've known several gay citizens who are far more ethical and moral than McConnell, Boehner, et al!

Posted by: lufrank1 | December 6, 2010 2:48 PM | Report abuse

Obama says:

"We need a commitment to innovation we haven't seen since President Kennedy challenged us to go to the moon," Obama said at Forsyth Technical Community College.

He urged members of both parties to "focus on what is necessary to win the future."


Then why did Obama cut our space program at the knees?


Posted by: janet8 | December 6, 2010 2:10 PM
================
it is no accident he used Sputnik shortly after killing the space program.

A LOT of the things he says and does are spitting in your face as an American if you have a clue what is going on. This is just another on the list.

Posted by: Cryos | December 6, 2010 2:29 PM | Report abuse

Obama says:

"We need a commitment to innovation we haven't seen since President Kennedy challenged us to go to the moon," Obama said at Forsyth Technical Community College.

He urged members of both parties to "focus on what is necessary to win the future."


Then why did Obama cut our space program at the knees?


Posted by: janet8 | December 6, 2010 2:10 PM | Report abuse

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